Four Mile Trail

Four Mile Trail, Yosemite National Park: Address, Four Mile Trail Reviews: 4.5/5

Four Mile Trail

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209 reviews
Very good

Milford, CT357 contributions
Worth it
Jun 2021 • Family
This is a steep trail that is narrow in some spots. Views were amazing. Not overly crowded when we did it. Take you r time and enjoy the views.
Written 8 August 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Beverly Hills, CA32 contributions
Strenuous but rewarding views
Jul 2021 • Family
This was a strenuous and rewarding hike! This was my first hike while visiting Yosemite for the first time!! I love morning hikes as there is less traffic and you really get to enjoy the peaceful sounds of nature. I arrived at 8am on Saturday morning and found plenty of parking along the road. You will see the sign ‘four miles trail’ from the road. Started the hike at 8:10am. This is a steep steady incline of a hike with constant switchbacks all the way up. This is also more closer to a 5 mile hike and that’s one way all the way up so coming down you would be doing close to 10 miles in total. Halfway up I got a bit freaked out doing a solo hike as i thought I would see more hikers than I actually did. I only saw 4 people while I was going up. I also am afraid of heights with certain things so there were definitely some points where I was as close to the rocks as I could be. When I thought about going back, my body just turned around with determination and continued onward, so glad I did!! It was very rewarding when I reached the top. The views are magnificent and you get a great view of half dome. Be prepared to see quite a few people at the top as there are tour buses that drive people to the top of glacier point. I stayed up here to have snacks and enjoy the views. They have a filling station for water that was working thankfully.
Made it up in 2hrs 35 minutes, very happy with my time! I’m 44 and I work out 5-6 days a week, mainly strength training. The way up is definitely all glutes, hamstrings and calves. The way down, you would think would be a lot quicker but I took my time as it’s very steep and there’s loose gravel and you can definitely slip. The way down is all quads. Got back to my car at 2:20pm. I saw some people struggling half mile into the hike when I was coming down. I definitely told them to go another day when it’s early morning as it was all sun when they were starting and hot! When I started it was 68-70 degrees, when I finished it was 95 degrees. It was also all shade on the way up and all sun on the way down. Didn’t get to see Yosemite falls as there were none but you do get amazing views. My body wasn’t sore the next day but 2 days later…ouch… after ending up also doing 2 hikes the next day after this one.

What I brought…drank about 2.5 liters of water, I add lemon slices to my water for vitamins, BCAA’s. Apple, clementines, a meal bar, gum, sunscreen, lip moisturizer (helps when you’re thirsty), money as the have a shop you can buy snacks at the top but I was good with what I brought, a hand towel- I put this on my shoulders and held it with my backpack draped on my shoulders, helped out sooo much since it was all sun on the way down.

Happy to say I conquered this one! Would I do it again? Probably not as there are many other hikes I would like to try when I come back to Yosemite. But this was definitely a great way to start my visit and being my first hike I’ve done in Yosemite! It was a beast!
Written 26 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Chicago, IL136 contributions
Heaven when Falls flowing, hellacious when not
Jul 2020
Having done this twice during a very wet year (2017) and a very dry year (2020), I can say that it is a two at times and a five at others. From a pure climbing perspective, it is awful - truly, unadulteratedly awful. The climb up is brutal and the climb down is painful. One does this hike ONLY for the views, principally of Yosemite Falls.

And therein lies the difference in the ratings. When Yosemite Falls is alive, as it was during our 2017 climb, this perspective provides some of the most spectacular views of the falls (see also Sentinel Dome) and one gets different looks at the falls from many levels and angles. Doing this hike upwards and then again downwards in 2017 in 95 degree heat was worth the suffering.

On the other hand, the falls were no more than spittle by late July 2020 and thus provided no solace to the effort of the downward climb this year - basically just a series of never-ending, slightly too-steep switchbacks for two hours (can be done downwards in 1.5 hours or less if you are not held back by a slower or more cautious group member). There is ZERO reason to do this hike in either direction if Yosemite Falls is not in full flow.
Written 28 July 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

D. Michael W
San Ramon, CA304 contributions
Worth the effort!
Nov 2019 • Family
My ten year old son and I went for a long day-hike on a short day. The forecast calls for snow in both the high country and the valley tomorrow so we wanted to squeeze in one last epic hike this season. We got on the trail about 8, made it to the top around 11. It was cold and our layers kept needing to be switched up with the changes in our pace and the weather. I’m glad we hiked on a cold fall day, I can imagine how much tougher the hike would be on a hot summer day. Don’t rush. Enjoy the views. The hike is amazing and was a great start to a much longer trip (we took the Panorama Trail to the JMT to get back to the valley). The trail was not crowded until you reached Glacier Point, which was worth the trip up (at least drive there if hiking isn’t your thing)!
Written 26 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Aaron D
Mount Vernon, IL60 contributions
Wonderful view.
Nov 2019 • Couples
Beautiful hike. Very strenuous and lengthy. We left the car around 0900 and didn’t get back until 530pm. Having to stop multiple times. All uphill one way and all down hill the other. Downhill seemed to be just as difficult due to the loose gravel and steep drop offs. We were definitely some of the slower hikers on the trail, but felt as if we kept a steady pace.
Written 19 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Kingston upon Thames, UK31 contributions
Magnifique Breathtaking... in every way
Sep 2019
Yup you gotta climb. You don't have to rush . Its amazing. I am afraid of heights but this is just something else and you never feel on the edge of a precipice as the trail is totally safe. Go for it.
Written 13 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Pat G
Windsor and Maidenhead, UK170 contributions
Day hike - four mile trail plus panorama trail with kids
Aug 2019 • Family
We decided on a long walk and wanted to get away from the crowds and see some other views than those of the picture postcards

Family of 5 with kids 13, 11 and 8. Used to walks of 1 to 2 hours, all reasonably fit but nothing of this scale

Having tried to find out about the route and suitability for families thought I would put a few details that may help others

In summary - an astonishing walk with incredible scenery and a perfect family experience. We were all a little tired and sore in evening but all look back as a highlight of the holiday

We set off 9.15am at the foot of four mile trail and took 2hr 45 Mins to glacier point. Stopping a few times for photos and water and a snack
Took an hour and a bit for a picnic at glacier point
The panorama trail took about 4 hours 20 mins down to the bus stop including a lot of water stops and some time at the falls.
We walked steadily but not over fast

Conditions and Paths
Conditions were good. 28 Celsius and hadn’t rained for days
The glacier point path is pretty easy on way up. Wide well maintained and easy walking.
The panorama trail is a little less wide and maintained but still ok. It’s mainly sandy
The trail down from Nevada Falls is less well maintained. Often some rocks in the path to be avoided. With sore feet was quite a chore. It gets very well maintained further down at the bottom

Our preparation
We had deliberately chosen not to bring serious hiking gear as we coming from UK and next stop was Hawaii
So we walked in gym gear and gym trainers
Took large day ruck sac with provision.
Take a lot of water. We had 1 per person litres all drank by top of glacier point.good news is can refill there. I would advise at least 2 litres per person for panorama. It is exposed to the sun
Take hats and sun cream
If you want, take a picnic. But food available at glacier point

Just incredible.
El Capitan on way up first part, then yosemite falls, then half dome close up
The view at glacier point is a highlight but jam
Packed with tourists so we took our picnic off to some rocks with a view and ate there
Panorama trail starts with constant and ever evolving view of half dome.
Down to a river where we paddled and rested for a while
Nevada falls is spectacular and if you are brave paddle upstream. Lovely site to rest
Last part of the trail in the woods doesn’t have much view and when tired is a bit of a slog.

The end
We got to the bus stop which had a huge queue.
My daughter and I chose to walk back to hotel (majestic) but rest of family took them 2 buses to get a space. So factor into your planning

I hope this helps any of you who read it.


Written 19 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Kansas City, MO129 contributions
Great hike!
Sep 2019 • Couples
We took the glacier point bus up to glacier point then hiked down this trail. It was an awesome experience. The views were fabulous. It was a good strenuous downhill 4.7 mile hike. If you to hike up from Yosemite valley it is a difficult uphill hike. We will definitely do that next time!
Highly recommend!!!
Written 16 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Melissa S
Livermore, CA39 contributions
Beautiful -- NOT 4 miles!
Aug 2019
This is a tough trail -- but beautiful. If you are up for a challenge -- this trail is for you. Take PLENTY of water and snacks and I would highly recommend hiking boots over sneakers. The trail is in good shape (lots of folks have commented that it is a mess -- that was not our experience). We considered hiking poles -- but in the end did not take them. We didn't end up needing them but may have been more useful on the downhill.
Written 15 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

San Diego, CA48 contributions
Be smart and go down instead of climbing up
Jul 2019
The trail is gorgeous and gives some of the best views of the Yosemite Falls and Yosemite Valley in the park. Be smart - take a bus to the top and go back down to the valley. Yes, it costs $25, but it will save you a lot of time and energy that you can spend exploring Glacier Point and adjacent hikes before going down the Four Mile Trail. If you decide to save some money and go up, make sure you are not overestimating your abilities. It is a hard 4.6 mile uphill hike with little shade and no water. I've passed quite a few hikers going up who clearly underestimated the difficulty, and looked like they were about to pass out even though they weren't more than 1 mile from the bottom. Do not make the same mistake, because even if you make it to the top, you will still have to go back down.
Written 6 August 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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